Tired of corporate trickery? Tired of being hoodwinked? Want to win a battle against corporate Canada? I have a resource for you…
Released earlier this year, Ellen Roseman’s latest book Fight Back – 81 ways to help you save money is what you should read before you go to war. Ellen’s book contains tons of practical and actionable advice to save money and win corporate battles with big banks, telecoms, airlines and more.
Why you should follow Ellen’s advice
Ellen Roseman is well known as a consumer advocate and nationally respected journalist. She is a personal finance columnist for the Toronto Star and maintains her own established blog at www.ellenroseman.com. Fight Back is Ellen’s latest release in a series of books that provide advice on spending less, how to save more and putting the right pieces in place for your financial future. I’m happy to promote Ellen’s book because she has a genuine passion to help others, and she follows my blog. Kidding aside, let’s take a look at this great resource for less than $20.
Fight back, Ellen’s way
The book is divided into seven parts which in total comprise 81 chapters of financial wisdom:
- Part 1 – Outsmarting the banks
- Part 2 – Keeping your finances on track
- Part 3 – Taming your telecom costs
- Part 4 – Stretching your travel dollars
- Part 5 – Fighting back against poor retail service
- Part 6 – Protecting your big dollar purchases of cars and houses
- Part 7 – Using your communication skills and the courts
Here are some of my favourite parts from Fight Back:
On how to trim the bank’s service charges…
“Find out if you qualify for free or low-cost banking because of your age.” Ellen suggests you try bank account selector tools here.
On foreign exchange conversion fees…
“Look for a credit card that does not charge foreign exchange fees.” “Check out alternatives to using your credit card when travelling.”
On breaking a closed mortgage…
“Ask about interest rates. Did the bank use the posted rate when you took our your mortgage or the discounted rate that you actually paid when calculating the IRD (Interest Rate Differential) penalty?” “Ask about blend and extend.” “Ask about portability.”
On checking your credit score…
Understanding the biggest part of your credit score is associated with your payment history (35%). Another big part is how much you owe (30%). Manage these appropriately and then “take care when closing accounts, since that can also hurt your credit score.”
On fighting back against bad financial advice…
Ask of your professional: “What training do you have?” “What continuing education courses are you taking?” “Can I see a plan prepared for someone else?” “Can I see any testimonials from your clients?”
In Fight Back, there are also numerous guest chapters to help you slash telecom costs and get money back when your car isn’t running properly. If you’re yet convinced Ellen Roseman’s fight-back methods can work for you, listen to her interview with Preet Banerjee here. Over the years, Ellen thinks she might have saved consumers about $300,000 for every one of her 14 years helping Canadians.
Rob Carrick, personal finance columnist for The Globe and Mail and respected author himself once said this about the value to be gained from reading Ellen’s books:
“The Swiss Army Knife of financial books. There’s savvy, practical advice here on everything from the best deals on banking to finding a financial adviser. Read it and be instantly smarter about personal finance.”